Down 2-13 Longford 1-14
Down edged out Longford to move into promotion contention following a rip-roaring second half at Páirc Esler last night.
Two Peter Lynn scores, either side of one for Liam Connerton, gave the visitors a 0-3 to 0-2 lead after 12 minutes, with Darren O'Hagan and Barry O'Hagan replying. Cory Quinn and Johnny Flynn then edged Down in front but they couldn't get away from Longford and the sides were locked at six points a piece late in the half.
That had come after Darren Gallagher converted a pair of frees for Padraic Davis's men along with another placed ball from Paddy Collum, while Flynn and a close-range Donal O'Hare free kept Paddy Tally's home side in the hunt.
Down finished the half strongly, with Liam Kerr's shot beaten out by Collum before Kevin McKernan, Kerr and Barry O'Hagan put them 0-9 to 0-7 to the good.
O'Hare got his first from play early in the second half to stretch Down's lead to three before Peter Fegan added another. However, things changed as Longford hit 1-2 in the space of three minutes.
Michael Quinn teed up Connerton to palm to the net on 52 before Dessie Reynolds and Gallagher both hit points from way out to put the away side 1-9 to 0-11 in front. Gallagher then notched his fifth point to extend their lead to two, before Kerr reduced the deficit soon after.
Then came Down's turn to find the net. After Barry O'Hagan had knocked over a free, Quinn fired home to give the hosts a 1-13 to 1-10 lead. Daniel Mimnagh and Collum reduced the deficit to a point, only for James Guinness to drive home and send Down on their way to victory.
Scorers - Down: C Quinn 1-1, J Guinness 1-0, B O'Hagan 0-3 (1f, 1m), L Kerr, D O'Hare (1f), J Flynn 0-2 each, D O'Hagan, P Fegan, D Guinness 0-1 each. Longford: D Gallagher (4f) 0-5, L Connerton 1-1, D Mimnagh (2f) 0-3, P Lynn, P Collum (2f) 0-2 each, D Reynolds 0-1.
Down: R Burns; S Annett, P Murdock, R McAleenan; G Collins, D O'Hagan, B McArdle; J Flynn, D Guinness; B O'Hagan, K McKernan, L Kerr; D O'Hare, A Morgan C Quinn.
Subs: P Fegan for Annett (26), J Guinness for Collins (50), O McCabe for Morgan (57), C Doherty for McKernan (59), N Donnelly for Quinn (70+2).
Longford: P Collum; P Fox, A Farrell, B O'Farrell; I O'Sullivan, G Rogers, CP Smyth; D Gallagher, K Diffley; M Quinn, D McElligott, D Reynolds; P Lynn, L Connerton, O Kenny.
Subs: D Doherty for Lynn (23), D Mimnagh for Smyth (52), J Hagan for Connerton (63)
Referee: C Reilly (Meath).
Sunday Indo Sport